- Get a deposit together
- Factor in additional fees
- Maintenance costs after the purchase
- The market condition in the area
- Have realistic expectations
Once you start looking at properties online, in magazines or newspapers, or against the window of the real estate agency next to the café you always go to, then you know you are gearing yourself up to buy a property.
This is an investment that will definitely pay off in the long run and you might feel a bit anxious to get the process started.
How do you know when you are ready to buy?
How do you know that you aren’t just rushing into things?
Here are boxes you can tick off in order to answer that question for yourself:
Get a deposit together
The first thing that you have to have readily available is a deposit.
The days where you are going to get a 100% mortgage plan are long gone and many banks now need a reasonably big deposit before they grant you the loan.
The average deposit required at the moment is 20% but the bigger your deposit, the better.
You will then be in a better position to negotiate. Sellers and real estate agents are also more likely to consider an offer if the buyer has a bigger deposit.
Factor in additional fees
A deposit is not the only big cost that you have to associate with buying a house.
There are many other calculations that you need to factor in as well that form part of additional fees.
Some of these are: bond registration costs which varies depending on the price of the house, deeds office registry, transfer duty fees (although there is no transfer duty payable on homes below R900,000), and conveyancer fees for the use of an attorney during the transferring process.
Mortgage lenders also look at life insurance as a prerequisite in buyers in the event that a home owner should pass away.
Maintenance costs after the purchase
During the process of buying a home, people are so excited about the thought of buying that they forget about the maintenance costs that will occur after the purchase.
It is important to consider the municipal rates and taxes payable every month, as well as home insurance.
Other costs that buyers need to keep in mind are things like moving costs, phone and internet connectivity, and possible renovations.
If you have moved to a new town, you might have to buy brand new uniforms for your children for their new school.
The market condition in the area
An important question that you need to ask is how well is the market doing in the area where you want to buy?
It is very important that buyers have a look at how the area is improving and how the infrastructure is being upgraded before making an offer.
It is still the best option to buy a house that is a bit worse for wear in a good neighborhood than buy a beautiful house in a bad neighborhood.
You can still fix the house, but you won’t be able to fix the area.
Have realistic expectations
The best way to prepare for buying is to get pre-approved at a lending institution.
It doesn’t cost anything, but it will give buyers a realistic idea of what they can afford. As soon as a buyer has been pre-approved, it is important to sit down and figure out how big of a deposit they need to put down in order to qualify for the loan.
It is possible to get a loan for a certain amount, but not being able to pay the monthly installments is counter-productive.
If you have taken all of the above into consideration and did the necessary research, then you are well on your way to owning your own home.